Call to action

Law enforcement career fair draws statewide interest

Lambda Alpha Epsilon held a criminal justice career fair Wednesday, Feb 12, to help those within that major to find a potential job or internship opportunity.

Lambda Alpha Epsilon (LAE) is a national co-ed fraternity dedicated to enhancing the academics and professionalism in the criminal justice field.

Ferris criminal justice junior Alexandria Bacarella and treasurer for LAE said that the organization hosts all sorts of events on campus, but the group’s primary goal is furthering their professional skills.

“We focus on professional skills, period,” Bacarella said. “We want our members to be able to go out and get a job after they graduate, and that’s somethings that we focus on in our fraternity. We’re as well a good network for each other because we all go different places and help each other out and see our different options.”

Bacarella originally joined the organization when she was unsure of what path she wanted to pursue in the criminal justice field. Bacarella decided that being in a group with others within her major would allow her to see her many options.

LAE had more than 50 departments from all over the state attend the criminal justice fair, ranging from local, national and even federal levels. Representatives from the Detroit Police Department to the U.S. Secret Service were present.

Deputy Tom Dyer had come from Berrien County’s Sheriff’s Office to inform and recruit students for potential jobs. Interest in law enforcement careers has declined in recent years.

“Right now we’re really hurting for help with law enforcement,” Dyer said. “Everybody in the state has seen a decline in people applying for law enforcement jobs. So, we wanted to show up here and show everyone here at the school what we have to offer.”

According to the FBI’s annual Uniform Crime Report, the number of Michigan police officers has dropped 12% since 2006.

This problem is not reserved to only Michigan as departments nationwide have been experiencing this shortage. Because of these shortages, different departments and agencies rely heavily on mandatory overtime to cover all the necessary shifts. Extended hours can stress law enforcement employees, affect their work and create risk.

Reasons like these are why LAE hosted the criminal justice fair, and why many departments attended the event. LAE member and Ferris criminal justice junior Bryar Velting claims the goal of the organization is to showcase all the options available for students.

“The biggest thing is definitely is to show how many opportunities there are for students after they graduate, and areas for internship. Because all the people here are looking and coming to the students,” Velting said.

If students in the criminal justice major are interested in joining Lambda Alpha Epsilon, they can contact a member or visit their Facebook page, “Lambda Alpha Epsilon – Ferris State,” to see when rush events or interviews occur.